31 Facts About Alphonso Taft


Alphonso Taft was an American jurist, diplomat, politician, Attorney General and Secretary of War under President Ulysses S Grant.


Alphonso Taft was the founder of the Taft political dynasty, and father of President and Chief Justice William Howard Taft.


Alphonso Taft reformed the War Department by allowing commanders at Indian forts to choose who could start and run post traderships, and by making reductions in wasteful military spending.


Attorney General Alphonso Taft coauthored a bill to Congress, signed into law by President Grant, that created the Elections Commission that settled the controversial Hayes-Tilden presidential election.


Alphonso Taft served until July 4,1884, and was then transferred by President Arthur to Minister of Russia, and he served in St Petersburg until August 1885.


Alphonso Taft had a reputation for serving political office with integrity and character.


Alphonso Taft was a rare and modern 19th politician who supported black voting rights and who reduced government corruption while holding office.


Alphonso Taft was born in Townshend, Vermont, the only child of Peter Rawson Taft of the powerful Taft family, and Sylvia Howard, on November 5,1810.


Alphonso Taft then taught school to earn money to attend Amherst Academy.


Alphonso Taft entered Yale College in 1829 and he graduated four years later in 1833.


Alphonso Taft helped create the secret society known as Skull and Bones in 1832 with William Huntington Russell.


Alphonso Taft subsequently studied law at the Yale Law School and was admitted to the Connecticut bar in 1838.


In 1839 Alphonso Taft migrated to Cincinnati where he was a member of the Cincinnati City Council, and became one of the most influential citizens of Ohio.


Alphonso Taft was a member of the boards of trustees of the University of Cincinnati, Antioch College, and Yale College.


Fanny Alphonso Taft died on June 2,1852, a few days before her last child's death.


Alphonso Taft formed a law firm with Thomas Marshall Key and William M Dickson in April 1854.


Alphonso Taft was a delegate to the Republican National Convention in 1856, and that year made an unsuccessful run for the United States House of Representatives against George H Pendleton.


Alphonso Taft was a judge of the Superior Court of Cincinnati from 1866 to 1872 when he resigned to practice law with two of his sons.


Alphonso Taft was the first president of the Cincinnati Bar Association, serving in 1872.


Alphonso Taft was elected a member of the American Antiquarian Society in October 1876.


Alphonso Taft had a good reputation as a lawyer and, importantly, was connected to business interests.


Alphonso Taft entered office with his "accustomed zeal and good judgment".


Alphonso Taft made a series of reforms to the War Department to restore its reputation and entanglements caused by Belknap's humiliating resignation.


Alphonso Taft reversed War Department policy by having commanders at US military forts in the West, rather than the Secretary of War, choose who would run post trader ships.


Alphonso Taft likewise ordered his Bureau and Commandant Department heads to lower their military expenditures.


In October 1876, after the highly contested Hayes-Tilden presidential election, Attorney General Alphonso Taft supported President Grant's use of the military in South Carolina and Mississippi to suppress violence against African Americans in the South.


Alphonso Taft gave a lengthy speech in New York outlining the atrocities committed by Southerners against blacks in the South.


Alphonso Taft was again an unsuccessful candidate for Governor of Ohio in 1879, this time against Charles Foster.


Alphonso Taft was a member of the Alphonso Taft family political dynasty.


Alphonso Taft's son, William Howard Taft, was the 27th president of the United States and the 10th Chief Justice of the United States, and was a member of Yale's Skull and Bones like his founder father; another son, Charles Phelps Taft, supported the founding of Wolf's Head Society at Yale; both his grandson and great-grandson, Robert A Taft I and Robert Taft Jr.


William Howard Taft III was ambassador to Ireland; William Howard Taft IV worked in several Republican administrations, most recently that of George W Bush.